Classic Motorcycles

  • Untitled BMW R80 G/S

    Untitled BMW R80 G/S

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    If I had to pick an older bike to take me on a tour of Europe, I’d choose a BMW R80 G/S. It’s a bona fide classic, but unlike most of that ilk, it’s also reliable, relatively simple on the mechanical front, and still has… Read more »

  • Norton International motorcycle

    Norton International motorcycle

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    In the pantheon of Norton history, the International tends to be overshadowed by the Manx. Which is a shame, because this classic British motorcycle has a strong and enduring charm of its own. At the time of its launch, in the early 30s, the International… Read more »

  • Yamaha RD400

    Yamaha RD400

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    If the Yamaha SR400 is the easy-going, easily swayed favorite of café racer builders, the two-stroke Yamaha RD400 is its delinquent half-brother. It was launched in 1976 as a slightly more refined version of the RD350 firecracker, but was still a quick, nervous bike to… Read more »

  • Laverda Jota

    Laverda Jota

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    One of the great tragedies of modern motorcycling is the death of the Laverda name. The brand was bought by Aprilia at the turn of the century—along with Moto Guzzi—but the familiar ‘SFC Orange’ has yet to reappear in showrooms. To my eyes, that lovely… Read more »

  • MV Agusta 600: the ‘Black Pig’

    MV Agusta 600: the ‘Black Pig’

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    Throughout the MV Agusta community, the 600 is affectionately known as ‘The Black Pig’. It’s one of the ugliest bikes ever made, but perhaps so ugly that it transcends style and fashion. Only 127 were built, between 1967 and the early 1970s, and this one… Read more »

  • MV Agusta 750S

    MV Agusta 750S

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    There are maybe ten bikes in my dream garage, and the MV Agusta 750S is one of them. Like the Ducati 750SS we featured two weeks ago, this one is owned by English motorcycle enthusiast Peter Bullard. It’s one of the very early models, built… Read more »

  • Ducati 750SS

    Ducati 750SS

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    If you had to make a list of the most desirable sporting motorcycles of the 1970s, the Ducati 750SS would be near the top. It was built by Ducati’s racing department to mark its victory in the 1972 Imola 200, and the accepted knowledge is… Read more »

  • Ace Cafe heads to the USA

    Ace Cafe heads to the USA

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles

    EXCLUSIVE Some great news for café racer fans Stateside: the legendary British Ace Cafe is setting up shop next year in the USA. Ten new outlets are planned, and arrangements for the first one are close to being finalized. If you can’t wait for that,… Read more »

  • Gnome et Rhône

    Gnome et Rhône

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    Gnome et Rhône is a familiar name in vintage aviation circles. But few people know that the French company also built motorcycles, from 1920 until the early 1950s. This lovely machine is one of around 3,000 manufactured under license from the British firm ABC Motorcycles—a… Read more »

  • Chang Jiang 750

    Chang Jiang 750

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles

    There are quite a few motorcycle manufacturers with murky histories, but few are as clouded by the passage of time as Chang Jiang. The lineage of this bike can be traced back to the 1938 BMW R71, which was copied by the Soviets and released… Read more »

  • Moto Guzzi motorcycle with supercharger

    Moto Guzzi motorcycle with supercharger

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    Words and images by Ian Considine for Italian Motor Magazine. It took Leo de Hollander from The Netherlands five years to gradually complete this magnificent supercharged motorcycle. On the 18th of July 2009, after 34 kicks and a wounded right leg, she finally coughed. Ten… Read more »

  • 1943 Harley WLC flathead

    1943 Harley WLC flathead

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,,

    James Roper-Caldbeck runs Customs From Jamesville, a small Harley workshop in Copenhagen, Denmark. We’ve featured his flatheads before, but none can top the story attached to this army-spec WLC 750, the latest machine to roll out of his shop. “In the 1940s, this WLC was… Read more »

  • Yankee 500 Z

    Yankee 500 Z

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    When I first glanced at this bike, I thought it was a Yamaha. But no, it’s an obscure brand called ‘Yankee’. It came out of Schenectady, New York in the early 1970s, although this particular unrestored machine now lives at the Museu de la Moto… Read more »

  • Laverda Jota

    Laverda Jota

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    The Laverda Jota sticks in my mind as the ultimate seventies superbike: it’s the two-wheeled equivalent of the iconic Lamborghini Muira. This 1977 Jota is owned by Alex Ozzard-Low, and after digging around, I was surprised to find that the Jota was not a true… Read more »

  • NSU Sportmax

    NSU Sportmax

  • Chris Hunter Classic Motorcycles ,

    If there was ever a piece of classic motorcycling sculpture, this is it. The unfaired NSU Sportmax was not a looker, but add the period ‘dustbin’ fairing and it’s transformed into a thing of beauty. This bike started life as a regular Max bought off… Read more »